Thursday, December 27, 2007

Just keep it going

I wish this holiday break would just keep going! Since Christmas hit on Tuesday I think 75% of the workforce took the rest of the week off and that was fine with me! I've gotten so much work done this week. I even answered the phone once with just the CI on. Nope, still need to practice that one.

Not really a lot going on so I'm not going to bore you.

CI mapping is tomorrow so got my fingers crossed that I'll dial into hearing a female voice better. Right now most sound a bit like they have a cold. Some really do. After an hour of that then I cross the hall and have speech with Krista.

I did daydream a moment today. Well, I had eaten lunch and the office was warm, which is rare. Also it was very quite. One moment I was working away and the next moment I was snapping out of it. HA! I was thinking about all the people who helped me along this past year and so I'm going to name some names. (If your name isn't on here, don't worry, it'll show up in a later blog).

Non-Family inspiration:
Wes (Man, you have rocked this year! It has been an inspiration watching you heading toward Ironman!)
Boomer (Ironman who carried our hospital Cancer Center name with him while doing the Ironman! Thanks Boomer -- always our hero)
Chris and Rebecca -- Friends just don't get any truer (is that a word?) than this. Always there for me!
Chris and Jen -- Shawdawg and Shawkitty. You know those folks you just plain enjoy being around... Dawg and Kitty are those type folks.
Yale -- I just laughed out loud thinking of all the crazy fun times. One of the generous kind hearted guys you'd ever meet.
Aussie Rodney -- Always inspiring me to do better spiritually.
Aussie Chris -- Always inspiring me to take photos like he does and ride outside the lines.
Ed -- dropping 140 lbs and kicking it on the bike now!
Jenn, Abbie and Jeff -- CI friends who are getting me through this thing.
Robb -- He's up there with Yale. Laughing thinking about the crazy times. "The faster you pedal the sooner the pain stops."

Shoot... I'm out of time... more later!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Hello, I'm Dasher

Took a little survey tonight...

width=350 align=center border=0 cellspacing=0 cellpadding=2>You Are Dasher

You're an independent minded reindeer who never plays by the rules.

Why You're Naughty: That little coup you tried to stage against Santa last year

Why You're Nice: You secretly give naughty children presents.

Up for air...

I'm coming up for air for just a moment. Walked into the office and it was weekend type quite. No cars on the roadways this morning. Hope my luck runs good on that all week. Love how it's Monday -- I mean Wednesday already!

Christmas was a lot of fun. Terri and I "promised" we would not get each other anything this year and we ended up getting each other more than in past years. It was funny. I woke and went into the den before anyone else got up and spotted a huge box... to me... from Santa! Ok, I became a kid at the moment! I was so excited and so surprised because I wasn't expecting anything. Turns out to be a ready nice office chair for the home office. I love it love it love it! Thanks Terri!

Ci Stuff: Ok, I've learned not to take this think off. I got lazy and just didn't want to deal with it so I wore only the hearing aid during Christmas morning (Yes, I just heard the collective gasp for all of you!). We then headed to my folks house and I put it on. I had to get used to the sound again. Seems like it took forever for my brain to process the sound on that side of my head again. I stayed CI only the rest of the day. I keep hearing stories about how folks with hearing aid on one side and CI on the other how they come to realize how nice the CI really is. I'm turning into one of those people. I still haven't plugged the CI into the IPod since music s-t-i-l-l is funky sounding. It's getting there.

I have a new love of baseball caps! They keep the mag on the CI in place when I work in the yard.

New Years stuff: Oh this is gonna hurt! I know I have got to get this "extended off season" gut off of me. Really guys, it's just plain bad. I'll be the first crazy person and throw my resolution out there. I've not seen any blogs putting their cards on the table for this yet.
Not in any sort of order... just random thoughts coming out here...
1. Drop the gut.
2. Get the fat gut and butt back on the bike and push off to a new adventure.
3. Get back to your 2-wheeled family. You miss them! You n-e-e-d them!!
4. Use the term "all learned up" this year in honor of Boomer.
5. Stop with the Java City... doesn't matter if it's a skinny latte, just cut that crap out.
6. Plan something big this year. Big enough to make friends say, "Are you serious?!"
7. Take church media to the next level and don't take credit for it either.
8. Spend a week on the beach with the family.
9. Give Emmy her new car when she least expects it. Yep, she's getting one and everyone knows it but the big question is when??? Buh ha ha ha!!
10. Meet Tyler Hamilton! He has signed with Rock Racing and should be racing in North Ark this spring. I know he had some issues but just the thought of seeing this guy race is just mind blowing. Now to think of Rasahann, Austin and Tyler all racing on the same team... oh man!

Used to I would make a list of One hundred and... whatever the year was, list of things to do during that year. Think I may do that again this year. 108 things to do in 2008.

Later folks!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas everyone!

Beautiful Christmas eve here in Arkansas! The temps are just right... cool enough to feel like the holiday but with tons of sunshine to keep me outside!

Woke up and spent some time reading by the fireplace early this morning. Reading a lot of Christmas humor stuff this week. The full moon lit up the neighborhood like it was daytime. Even with the bright moon I could see the stars with ease. That was out on the deck. Now on the other side of the house (looking out the kitchen window, the sun was starting to light up the horizon. Beautiful light blues and orange.

Headed out to get a few stocking stuffers and back to the house by 10. My yard was calling me. I cranked the lawn mower and cleared the leaves, hopefully for the last time, off the lawn. The back still had some wet leaves from the rain a couple of days ago so it made for a heavy tarp-o-leaves to drag to the curb. We have a leaf sucker truck that comes by about once every other week and sucks all he leaves that you can put down at the curb. For a couple hundred bucks you can buy them back this spring as mulch. Serious.

Sadie (family dog) loves it when I work outside because she will be out there running and playing. She doesn't seem to like to really hang out by herself out there.

OK, ok, here are the CI stories... Church was really nice. The songs really sounded nice and I flipped the hearing aid on just a tad to get it in 7.1 Surround Sound. HA! Greg asked me from where he was up front how the second service was sounding. Embarrassed I said, "You guys are rocking!" Then after the sermon he walked up to were we were sitting and handed me a mic and asked me to tell the church what I thought about my hearing. First thought was ,"Man, would you cut this stuff out!" I just told everyone how grateful I was and how nice it was to hear so many voices in song. It really was. One of the things that did really surprise me was when everyone turned pages in their bibles. I could hear hundreds of people doing this.

Well, the gifts are all wrapped, I can smell the girls starting Christmas Eve dinner (wife's family all come to our house), sun will be starting to set behind the hill in about an hour and the outside lights will all come on. Yup, life is good!

Have a merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Day 5

We went to a BBQ place last night with extended family and the place is awesome to eat at but not the place you want to be as a new CI user. The floor is concrete and the chairs are wooden. Add that with your usual happy Friday night holiday crowd and I lasted about 5 minutes and I had to switch to hearing aid only. Sliding chairs are not a sound you want to hear at increased volume. (Note to slave driving Audios: Yes, I turned the aid off and returned to CI the minute I walks out... y'all can ask Terri if you don't believe me! HA!). The strange thing was that when I took the CI off in Whole Hog I got really tired and was actually missing the sounds I had gotten to enjoy all day.

I chilled this morning and was a slug until I went to a family gathering this afternoon. I didn't put the CI on until we got ready to go but I've had it on since and it's been a good day. We did get good rain and it's so pretty to listen to. I cringed a bit as we drove the 20 minutes to the place of the gathering. Every time our Odyssey hit a water spot it sounded like someone hitting a cymbal.

I got to play with ALL my great nephews and niece. I am lucky enough to have 4 great nephews and 1 great niece (she is part of a twin set). Oh goodness, Elliott is a doll! She walked in with her big purse and was a sweetheart the whole time. All the kids were great actually. She curled up on my lap and had her sippy cup and got really still. Someday years from now I hope I get one just like her!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Day 4

It just continues to be awesome!

Had my first speech therapy today with Krista. She gave me the 6 sounds on a dry wipe board in front of me. You know the oo ee ah m s and sh sounds. Then we went through some words that sound alike. I crashed on the difference between boot and book. All in good time... all in good time. I also got a page long list of homework... who on earth gives homework over Christmas break? HA! No, serious, I'm glad to have these projects to work on.

I felt good about the speech therapy session. One of the other speech/audio guru's (Anna) came in and there was something about her voice that I wasn't picking up on. I kept catching myself not quite understanding her. There have been a few women that have the same pitch that I'm just not getting yet. It bugs me... I want it to process now. HA!

I'm telling you, this is the best Christmas present ever. What I'm about to say, I kid you not is the truth. I love the Porsche Boxster and this morning there was one parked right outside my office. A fine black on black number. As I was heading to Java City I looked it over then I asked myself the ultimate "Loaded Question"... which would I rather have this Christmas? A 50 grand CI or a 76 grand car? The choice was so easy... it was the car! HA! I'm kidding. Now that I have a CI, I couldn't live without it.

Met with Greg last night to do the run through for all the Sunday's holiday service media. Video's, special music, overlaid songs, you name it and it's part of the service. I'm glad that Scott is going to be in the control sit this week. This will be the first Sunday to check out my CI in a auditorium full of people.

Well, now it's just doing my speech homework and learning to live with the implant for the next week. Tonight will be my first experience dining out with it on. Fingers crossed that it's Roma in J'ville but I think it may be Whole Hog for BBQ.

For all of you folks heading out for the holiday... have a safe trip and laugh a LOT! It's good for the soul!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Day 3 -- Led Zeppelin

It was Led Zeppelin's Stairway to Heaven. Yep, that was the first song I've recognized on the radio. A good friend of mine is the morning DJ on the Point 94.1 (Classic Rock) and I knew he was talking after the song then it was cool how suddenly his laugh came processed in!

It rained but it was about 4 this morning so I missed the big sound but I did get to hear it a little this morning. Cars on wet pavement with water spray have a "reeeeeessse" sound.

While walking back into the office I kept hearing a do-it, do-it, do-it. What on earth??? It was water drops in the downspout on the corner of my office.

Oh and several cars starting their engines at the same time is weird. I could pick up on one car at pretty close range but hearing several at once and being no where near them is sweet!

I'm hearing all sorts of sounds far way that I have no clue what they are. I did figure out one was a printer at the other end of the building.

If someone walks down the hall and coughs it scars the hibby gibby's out of me. That sudden burst of sound s something else.

I'll try and update more tonight... lunch is over.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

More cochlear implant activation day video -- Arkansas Children's Hospital

More activation day video.

Day 2, Part 2

It's so funny how I can hear things that are "far away". That's as in a couple of rooms away. I hear people cough, drawers closing. Tonight was funny because I kept hearing something that sounded like someone sanding something. It was Terri walking in house shoes on the kitchen floor. I did finally pick up a little music while driving today. Actually I was sitting still waiting for traffic to move (don't you love rush hour) and I could hear music. The radio was only on level 2. I've never heard it on level two.

The washing machine is another thing that is deafening to me. Oh and hangers in my closet. If I slide a hanger and it makes that metal scraping noise -- ugh! And the dryer with blue jeans banging around while it tumbles. But you know what... I'm excited to even hear that.

I did notice a couple of folks looking at it today and even though I've seen people looking at my hearing aid, it didn't bother me. This is a bit different with it's wire and magnet. I want to say, "It doesn't go in my head and it doesn't hurt."

In laws made it in safe from Florida. Tons of gifts and homemade goodies. I'll do my best to not eat a bunch of it. Now if she makes her famous Key Lime pie, well, there will be no turning back.

Once again, I am tired from all the new sounds today. It's been a blast but it's at time overwhelming. It's so funny to get excited over simple sounds. I think the number of coworkers I've made cry is up to 3 or 4 now. When I tell them things like I heard keys or I can't wait for the rain, it seems to hit home that everyone takes the simple sounds of life for granted. We do. Even with my pre-CI hearing I took sounds I could hear for granted.

New count down started and that's to Saturday. I get to see the twins and all the other little tots in one room at one time. (Make a Little Richard style Whoooooo here! HA!)

I called my sister yesterday and we had a 20 minute laugh session Every time we get together we seem to get the silly's and that's what makes her great. Now, what I was saying about the tots all together. Well, my sisters will be all together Saturday and I will leave with a tummy so sore from laughing. It's Arkansas style version of Steel Magnolias. Insanely funny stuff. You'll hear (you have to say this with a slow southern accent) "Now, y'alllll..."

Oh, family funny.... While I was talking to Sherry, her husband had made some candy (it's really good too). I asked her if she ate it all and she stuttered around and said "Yes... I mean, no... well... uh... I mean I ..." I got so tickled and I laughed and laughed.

Day 2

Finishing up lunch...
Spent part of the morning hanging out in Audio with Jordan while she did some more programming. Everyone told me that each day sounds different and to be honest, I HATED it when I turned it on this morning. OK, here's a clue for folks like me... yes, you can turn it down. I was so set on working through the 3 programs yesterday.

Today I got a different sound coming through. This sounds so much more like my hearing aid on steroids. Much more easier to live with. (Note to the audio guys... yes, I have my hearing aid turned off). Voices are much better today. Still sounds grungy when people who talk loud talk. I love folks with soft voices now. Trust me, it's so easy to hear them now. Never thought I would ever type those words.

I did plug the IPod into the processor while in the clinic this morning. I'll have to work on that one awhile. It was a Beatles tune and I couldn't have told you that at all. that's one of the unusual things about this journey. I can hear my car keys jingle but I can't process music yet.

Note to CI users: Have you tripped a store thief alarm? I'm not looking forward to that day at all. I suspect I'll just shout, "Put your guns away, I'm bionic!" Oh that will scare them huh? HA!

Am I still blown away by this product... you bet! Blown away 10 times over!

Back to work... more later.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

ACTIVATION DAY

8:30 --- I should be working but I knew a lot of folks would be reading today so I'll update off and on through the day. I'm 2 hours out from walking across the parking lot and having them flip the switch. I'm having my skinny latte so life is good. I was walking with my VP across the parking lot and who would we run in to? Ellen, my recovery nurse. This was the first time I had seen her since the surgery. I gave her a big bear hug and laughed.

12:12pm --- ALL SYSTEMS GO!!!!
Velcro sounds so funny! Poor Jordan sounded like a man. Terri (wife) sounded more like herself. Steve the other audio sounds like himself just fine... maybe a little tweaking. They are giving me 3 programs that increase in volume... you are kidding me right? Everything is so loud right now. This keyboard is insane. Most folks are gone to lunch right now so I'm excited to see what it is going to sound like in a little while with coworkers around.

I'M GONNA LOVE THIS!!!!!!!!!

Not near as mechanical as I was expecting. It seemed to be right as Jordan flipped the switch and it was then sort of like I could hear her but there was a sound barrier between us. That seems to be going away really fast.

It keep picturing one of those underwater plants that move and flow. That's sort of what this is like. I'm already having those... what was that moments.

Oh what a fun journey this is now going to be!!!

4;21pm --- What an absolute amazing afternoon! I have some really funny stories. I have asked, "What was that noise?" a few times when I shouldn't have. We've laughed a lot.
Check back later tonight and I'll do my best to have the video up.

8:16 -- Been a blast today but I'm about ready to find a quite spot and a book for a bit. I was told that I'd be working my way through 3 programs before my morning appointment tomorrow. Not sure I will get to #3. Everything is so loud. I've been asking folks to whisper so I can understand them better. When some folks talk normal it seems so loud that it's distorted.

I did venture out to run an errand and did fine. Some of the funny things that have happened today are:
I heard a noise and asked what it was and to my embarrassment it was someone in the restroom.

One of my coworkers walked down he hall and I could hear a swishing noise and it was her pants. I said I could hear her pants rubbing and she thought I meant she had big thighs! She doesn't but I logged that in the ole mental bank to never mention anything like that again to a girl. HA!

I heard my keys jingling. That sound was what I used to gauge the volume on my hearing aid years and year ago. If I could hear the keys then I knew it was turned up loud enough. Now it will always be turned up!

I washed my hands and just stood there listening to the water. Oh how I can not wait until it rains!!!! I want to hear a car drive by and hear the water spray. I could always hear the car going back and I knew what the water spray was supposed to sound like but over the past few years the high pitched part slowly died away.

Well, here it is being turned on. It takes a bit to load. Sort of long.

I hate looking at myself in video or photos but promised the activation video. There are 3 more videos but I'll space them out. It would sort of be like watching someones vacation slide show.

Thanks for hanging out with me today! Can't wait to see what tomorrow will bring.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Waiting and ringing and riding

Waiting: Yes, somehow I will sleep tonight knowing that in the morning I'll go to work as normal but come home a tuned in and turned on bionic. If I make it out like Jeff (see link over on the blogs I read list) did with his CI then I'll be a very happy camper.

Ringing: Wha???!! Yep, that pesty ringing in back in my CI ear. I have figured out that when my heart rate goes up the ringing returns. I figured this out when the media at church froze and I had to do some fast moving while the guy was doing the announcements. thank goodness he was long winded! I got everything back on line but the stress made my heart giddy up and when it did the ringing was roaring. I can make it ring by yawning too. Weird!

Riding: I got on the trainer (bike) tonight. Ever gotten one of those papers back in school with the big red bad grade written over sized on your paper? I would have gotten one of those tonight. I was just glad I got on it and rode and even sweat. My pal Jason and I went to lunch today and I was telling him how surprised I was that I hadn't gained that much weight even though I had been eating fast food and other crap and not riding. He said, but I bet you lost a lot of muscle weight. I cringed! The was like a cold wet rag thrown in my face. He didn't mean it like that but I was the good smack up the side of the head that I needed. To even think of losing muscle due to fat middle aged laziness is a bad thought all the way around. Bet I'm back on that trainer again tomorrow night...with a CI in place!

It's so strange that I'm booking into the new year already. I even got one schedule of events today via email that takes me all the way to the end of 2009.

I did something pretty bold today. In an email I set out to the church presentation team, I told them how I was really looking forward to hearing Christmas songs this Sunday. (Enter Willie Coyote snickering laugh). Well one service last year had zero Christmas songs. I thought that was the most deflating thing in the world to do. I'll know Wednesday if it worked... keep your fingers crossed.

By the way, here is the hospital Christmas e-card that went out to thousands. When you watch it, pay close attention to the scene after the helicopters. Yep that was me and the awesome team that rode the River to River ride for kids with hearing impairments.
http://www.archildrens.org/thanks/

Note to cycling friends: I am still very grateful to you all and because of you a child is hearing better today!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saturday Part 2


Forgot a really funny story to tell...
A friend of mine was telling me at lunch yesterday that a friend of hers took their little boy to a live nativity scene where you walk through. They were talking back and forth about the different parts and then they were about to round a corner to were the people got the element of surprise, the baby Jesus part.

So mom and little (5 year old) son are talking and she knows what's around the corner so she starts buttering him up and she says, "... and what did the wise men see?" About that time they round the corner and the little boys screams, "MCDONALD'S!!!"

Seems there was a McDonald's on the hill just outside so when he looked up for the star he spotted the golden arches!

Sleet?

Daughter just ran into TV crew at Best Buy and called to tell us it may start sleeting about 9:30 tonight. Oh great...

The wind is howling outside but we are warm and toasty in the house. I got the firewood a few days ago and brought some of it into the garage to keep it dry and it's just been a nice afternoon/evening with the Christmas tree, fireplace, the girls wrapping a mountain of gifts for family and friends. Tyler came by and we had fun working with my new video software. It's great to have a video pro (him not me!) in the family.

It was fun going to the office yesterday with the buzz. Everyone was doing the double take and then rubbing my head. It was funny. I stopped by Audio and the guys slapped the magnet right on. I could feel it pull together. (Big sigh) All systems go for Tuesday. This is sort of like leading up to the surgery...excited, nervous,,,etc.

I set up the media for church tomorrow and there are 178 transitions for 2nd service! Whoa. The search does seem to have a real preaching time but a few words then couple of songs and back and forth 3 times.

Bonus of the day: Who really played the tune "Miles Away"? I ran across the Ryan Farish version on ITunes and remembered I liked that tune but couldn't figure out who really did it. This will be a great tune for riding through the pecan groves.

There was another tune called Pacific Wind that he plays that's good too. These will work for basic "just get your miles in" rides. The wind and rain/sleet supposed to be gone tomorrow so I'm thinking loading Ipod with new tunes and take the bike out for a few miles. There is actually a ride heading out to the farmlands tomorrow afternoon but my legs couldn't keep their pace and I'd be dropped like a bad habit.

Life sure is fun right now!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Just gimme the keys and let me drive it!

Got an email from Jordan (One of my audio buds) across the street. She asked if I could stop by while I was in the main hospital and let her check the magnets so Tuesday when we activate then this wouldn't slow us down. No prob. I got over there this afternoon and she tried several magnets and only one stuck and then when I moved my head it came off. Bummer. She said there were several things that could be going on. One was my thick scalp. I laughed and said, "If y'all don't stop calling me a fat head." She laughed. The other thing was my hair. It's thick and curly or wavy. So I knew how to eliminate that problem. Guess who stopped by Sport Clips on the way home and got a b-u-z-z?? I love it, love it, love it! It's a short version of my summer haircut. Man, I'm going to freeze my butthead off in a couple of days when that temp drops! I don't have to comb my hair or dry it any more! Yea-izzz!

Meanwhile, as I was saying, Jordan was trying different mags and we had the door open. All the other audios would be walking by and see me sitting there and freeze. They would all then get excited and Jordan would have to tell them we were just playing with mags. Then she said she wanted to hook it up to the computer to get a green light. At that point I got all excited! Will I hear the beeps??? No, not this time. Pure torture... Just gimme the keys and let me drive it!

Get this though, she told me that she scheduled a CI for a patient today and guess what the earliest date is now.... M-A-Y of 08.... 5 months out. Well John is the best! Come to think of it, we started all of my CI stuff back around May of this year.

One other really cool thing Jordan was telling me today. With the little girls who get CI's she gets an extra cap and glues rhinestones on it for some styling! I thought, you know, that's why I love these folks I work with. They are always a level above!

Note to Boomer: Awww man, Chris Botti jazz is great! Love this stuff! Thanks for the suggestion!

Got to run... y'all have a great Friday!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Midweek!

To my friends and family... yes, I was excited to take the trash to the curb last night. "Trash" means midweek which means weekend is coming.

OK, here's another funny "Trash" story. The lady that cleans our offices walks down the hall every morning dragging a huge trash bag. We all have these mini trash cans and she will stop in front of our door and just look at you and say "Trash". One day she did this to my coworker in the office next to me and I completely lost it. I thought she was calling Evie "Trash". Didn't hit me that she was gathering our trash. We all had a good laugh.

Well then it got funnier this week! She came in my office and said , "Trash?" and I said, "Yes, ma'am, I got a little." She has this funny little he-he-he laugh she does then really loud she said. "Oh, yeah, George got a little!" he-he-he-he. I wanted to crawl under my desk. I could hear snickering down the hall. Man, never a dull moment in HR.

I got a GREAT email from a friend about getting back out there and riding. It was good and Chris Ironman, I appreciate it. It was just what I needed to hear.

Speaking of hear... I get the big turn on in less than a week. Whoa man I'm psyched!

We'll have 5 little folks UNDER 2 this year at my folks house for Christmas. It's going to be fun! I plan to take the mov-ee cam and roll it. They'll be grabbing toys from each other and screaming, and sneezing in each others faces! Award winning video coming up! HA!

Temps are doing the big drop and the firewood man is bringing this winters firrewood after work today! Yea-izzz!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Pretty in pink

Had he coolest thing happen today. We have a recruiters meeting every Monday morning at 8:30 and they know I have to walk across the parking lot to Java City to grab a latte. Everyone at the hospital knows this boy will show his face between 8 and 8:30 daily.

Well this morning I'm standing there with coworkers and one of my favorite Audiologist is standing a few ahead of us and she had a little girl with her. I could see the little pink things in her ear. After she made her order I knelled down to talk to her. That's a big thing at a kids hospital... get down to their level. So I told her I like her pink ear molds to her behind the ear hearing aids. She was all smiles then I flipped her out and reached up and pulled my hearing aid from around my ear to show her I had a hearing aid. She was sooo funny and cute. I told her I needed o get a new one (ear mold) and I asked her what color I show get and she stopped and did that little kid thinking look and then smiled real big and said, "PINK!" Everyone laughed. I just don't think bubble gum pink ear mold would look cute on me like it does her. She made everyone's day!

We have had 3 days of fog and it's getting sort of a pain. Sounds like a big cool down is headed this way after the Wednesday rain. Kin, if you are reading this, I hope you guys over in OK missed the bad stuff.

I bought some new software! Pinnacle Studio for making movies! I've got this PowerPoint stuff down for church and work now I want to go to the next level of "entertainment". Since my son is a professional in this stuff I figured I could get him to work with me getting me through the basics. I'll try and upload a few test movies as I build them. I'm planning on putting together some cool stuff. It's all in my head... yep, stored in that new 50 thousand dollar computer installed in my head. OK maybe not but sounded bionic-ish huh?

I'm getting in the mood to go to I-Tune land and download some new music. thinking Jazz this time. Anyone got a favorite? Leave me a comment and let me know what it is.

Hey Jeff, GOOD LUCK on your CI activation on Tuesday!

I'm outta here for the night.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Been a good weekend

It's been a good weekend and I'm certainly feeling my normal old self again, Everyone at church services today wanted to know if I had run into anymore walls. All in good humor. I have so many friends who are just as excited about the "big turn on" as I am.

I'll see Dr. D (Dornhoffer) for a few minutes as a post op check-up on Tuesday right after lunch. There are a lot of questions I want to ask just because I'm curious and really get into this stuff.

The the 18th this the big turn on. Since I have a great team of folks, especially Scott, covering the media at church i a as close to stress free as I have been in 2 months. I feel like now I can really concentrate on learning to hear out of the new ear. I have been really worried about the services. The "look and feel" and can roll out there but once we go live I was thinking, "What if your ears start ringing?" I sat upstairs in the control booth the first part of service and had zero problems and could have even drove but then I wanted to get a feel of the crowd and even with my hearing aid turned down my ears were ringing a bit. Bummer, they had been playing fair all weekend. It went away fast.

I got the rest of the Christmas decorations outside yesterday. I really had thought I might could have put them up last weekend but I was too looped still to care. I also got the few leaves up off the lawn. Tonight is the big drive through all around the neighborhoods to see the lights. We've got it good because our home is on top of the hill looking over the valley so we can see a lot of Christmas lights Usually it' bumper to bumper but a strong storm came through and dumped the rain and dropped the temps about 2 hours ago so it was a slow start for luminary night.

Our house group from church put together 40 gym bags of items together tonight and they are planning to go under the bridges next Sunday morning at 6. They really packed some valuable stuff including what is called a "homeless blanket". I had never known there was really a blanket called that but it's a super thick heavy wooll blanket. They also packed canned meats, peanut butter, puddings, snack pack fruit, spoons, gloves, socks, caps, cleaning stuff and then they did something really col, they packed 4 cards and envelops stamped so they could write to let a loved one know they were OK. Then it gets even better... they were given a couple of wrapped gift, one with socks and one with gloves that they are to give away to someone who needs them. I will be interested to hear the results.

Well, I didn't get on the trainer bike today. Yeah, I know... lard butt! I was busy today and it was a fun day so maybe tomorrow. A guy can dream can't he? HA!

Friday, December 07, 2007

Glad it's Friday

Long week this recovery week has been. It has gotten easier everyday. The ringing is for the most part gone unless I'm talking a lot or I have to move my head around a lot. Also i can taste most foods now. Still seem to be enjoying salty stuff more than anything else.

My to do list for the weekend is 3 miles long. Man, you miss one weekend and it sets you back big time. I have to put the lights up outside and clear the side of the garage so we can put a car in there. One side is fine, the other is tons of Christmas boxes (Note to my wife: No dear, I love all this stuff, I really do)

I need to do some Christmas shopping. I need to get leaves off the lawn...again. If "green" wasn't so "in" right now I'd cut a few trees down.

I W-I-L-L get on the trainer bike this weekend and ride. I have got to get my bike legs back. I keep telling myself, "Geo, the party's off you big buffoon! Get back on the bike and get on with it."

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Very out-of-the-box and very right!

I read something during lunch that was mind blowing unusual. There is a church in Canton, GA called Revolution. They gave away their Sunday offering. Serious! They took up a collection at some point, no sure if that day or last week. Anyway, everyone in the crowd last Sunday got an envelope with a different amount of money to go out into the community and give-it-away! Some went to Wal-Mart and spotted a person they felt guided to give the envelope to and gave it in passing. Some gave it to different charities. One person bought the whole line at Starbucks their drinks. It was all up and down the scale. It was a most awesome read! Imagine what folks would remember about your church or organization if you did something like this!

Here's the link if you are interested:
http://revolutionarylove.tv/2007/12/02/revolutionarylovetv-share-your-story/

So why not do something a little crazy and out of the box this Christmas season?

Oh by the way.... our church entered the Sherwood Christmas parade for the first time this year and guess who won first place??? Oh yeah!!! They worked so hard!

THE PHOTO

Welcome to extreme makeover!

I opted for the Tupac (I say it as "Two-pack") head gear, the 80's Don Johnson/Miami Vice no shave, and druggie celebrity mug shot look. Y'all think I achieved that look?
Feeling much much better!!!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Quick hit Monday

Just a quick hit.
I did return to my office this morning and still have times were I walk like the ground is slanted but the roar is going south finally.
I have this bruise on my neck like I've been in a fight with one of Tony Soprano's men.
All in in, really, it's getting better.
Now just waiting until Dec 11th for the surgery follow up
Then it will be wait one more week after that... Dec 18th for activation.
Please tell me the ringing doesn't return when they flip the switch!!

Interesting story: Emmy went to stay with friends in Fayetteville and Terri drove 1/2 way to pick up her up yesterday. A big cold front was coming and David called from Fayetteville as he was going back and the south side of the tunnel was 69 and the north side when he came out was 39.... that's a trip!

Friday, November 30, 2007

Not as easy as it sounded

The drugs are wearing off a bit and I'm trying to get it together but my goodness that roar is l-o-u-d! It seems to be getting better but there are still times it's so loud it could about take you to your knees.

Flip back a couple of pages to "Morning of..."
So I got to the hospital and Eddie (Admissions) made me feel like a VIP right off the bat. Signed the forms then headed back to the little room where they asked all the questions several times. It was funny because we are a children's hospital so part of the question set was about if I was a full term baby and such. We laughed.

Sondra, who is the director of OR came in and was super nice and comforting. She was one of the many hero's of the day. I remember Dr. D coming in and you would have thought we just won the super bowl. All be smiles and high fives. The day was here and this is what we came to do!

A-Doc came in and she time for some versed. I got the shot in the IV then I was dageryergahgh!!!! I remember Kelley coming in to take photos and I remember going from one bed to another.

Then I remember that sweet nurse beside my bed as I woke. At least I tried to wake. Man, I'm not shaking this off like the ear surgery I had in April. Back to sleep. I could hear people talking but it was like I wasn't there with them. I remember getting really scared because I was shaking. I just remember telling myself I had to get up but my body wasn't going with the plan.

I remember my pal Jason was at the bedside and I made a remark about I had died and gone to hell. I think I heard laughs and someone saying OK, he's back. Fade to black again.

I finally got awake enough that that wheeled me back around to the ambulatory area rooms. Good, I'll be going home before long. It's dark now.

You'll be staying. You'll be going home. You'll be staying. I wanted to go home but my breathing was too low. What I was told was that when I came in my pulse/Ox was 99 and now it's only 93. My breathing was too swallow due to the pain when I would breath, I didn't want to breath very hard.

Why so much trouble with this??? The implant had been faulty and they had to redo it. Surgery took twice as long so I was under longer. They got the implant in and when Steve ran the test they got weird numbers and didn't like it. Come to find out it was cracked and had some fluid in it.... so I've heard. I'll be interested to heard the story in a couple of weeks on my follow up visit. I was too looped to gasp much of it.

We finally got home Thursday morning and I was feeling a lot better just being home. Terri went on to work and I was there alone. Not a problem. Emmy came by the house and asked what I wanted for lunch. Sonic cheese sticks and a small coke sounded so good and it was. I fell back asleep after eating and sleep for a couple of hours. I woke hungry and staggered to the kitchen to find a cake my sister had brought over. Sounded good. Strawberry! I ate then it all went down hill! I threw up like I hadn't thrown up in years. There were times I thought I was passing out and I refused to open my eyes. Finally it passed and I got cleaned up and back to the sofa to stay.

I slept well through the night and it's been a basic recovery day. I removed the wild head dressing and took a shower but not washing that side on my head. I felt so much better!

Tried to watch movies but it just wasn't fun. I slept some more.

I have found the more I get up and move around the better I seem to feel.

Life will be good again before long I just have to be patient and that, I'm not...

This CI journey certainly had it's unexpected uphill but I think we will get there soon.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Ready for take off

Leaving in a few for the hospital. Can't wait to get this over with.

Terri and I had a really nice 26th anniversary dinner last night and almost had the cozy restaurant to ourselves.

Thanks everyone for all the calls and emails!

More later if I'm not too drugged up.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Ahead of the game

I did something I've been wanting to do since I started working with the church media... that is get ahead. I just finished the preacher's sermon slides for the w-h-o-l-e month of December! Yea-izzz! The theme is God's Greatest Gifts -- Just for you. I emailed them a few minutes ago. Hope the ole boy flips out when he sees his email tomorrow! HA! Serious though, it's still a huge honor to be a part of the media team at our church.

Speaking of gifts, I got an email from one of the media groups I subscribe to and they are giving away a piece of media everyday until Christmas! I downloaded the first one tonight and thought, OK, it will be a nice photo that I may can use. Oh no baby, it was a movie loop of flickering candles!! Very nice addition to our media library! I'll be using it as a welcome loop as folks enter the auditorium for an evening service. It's a nice warm look. I love it!

One of our church members called me today to ask me about a PowerPoint problem he was having. I ended up at his home tonight and showed him some short cuts and we worked on his slides. Again, another honor.

OK, I know what y'all want to know... am I nervous? You have no idea! I'm staying a busy as I can be to make time pass. Working fast and furious at work and staying busy at home. I did find out that the surgery starts at 8 and I have to be there at 6. Man, Java City won't even be open yet... not that I could have it anyway but I could at least stop by and smell it a moment! HA! Maybe oh maybe I can grab a cup on the way out after the surgery.

Night y'all!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Need a little laugh on this rainy Sunday?

Something tells me that this will come back and haunt me but oh well... it's all for a good laugh. Emmy put a little family Christmas card together for all of you!

ENJOY...
http://www.elfyourself.com/?id=9594620644

Life is good!
Geo.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

It takes a village

It takes a village... actually it took several hours to set up the village. Every year we have a Christmas village that I have to stand on to or three chairs to put together. It's on top of our entertainment center. Looks real nice now that it's night time.

I didn't put the outside lights up this afternoon since it was getting colder and cloudier. I bet I'm going to wish I had. Not sure next weekend (3 days after surgery) would be the best time to do it either. HA! It would be like a real life version of Christmas Vacation.

Well Terri and Ty made it home but not a lot of big stories to tell. They did do the right thing and stop at Panara on the way back and brought me a few bagels and Hazelnut cream cheese. (Yes, Melissa, I hear you laughing!). I really don't need any other Christmas gifts... that was what I really wanted!

Emily walked in a while ago and handed me the movie 300!!! She bought it this afternoon for 3 dollars!! Yeaizzzzz!!!! Love that movie!

Tyler told me he would email the link to his bosses video library. I've seen the list once and it's pages and pages. But then they are work on videos so they have all the latest.

I thought for a moment about going out on the bike today but with it being cold and surgery coming up I didn't want to chance getting sinus or a cold. I have a friend who was supposed to have prostate surgery a couple of weeks ago and they had to reschedule because he got a cold. I would com unglued if i had to reschedule the CI surgery. I've waited so long and I would have to wait until probably late Jan or early Feb to get back on Dr. D's surgery list.

This CI is like waiting for a baby... you know it's coming very soon but the waiting is crazy stuff!

Friday, November 23, 2007

The day after...

Had a great time with the family yesterday. The crowd was just the right size at my parents house. We ate, laughed and then played Loaded Questions in the den while some watched football. For those who know me know I'm not a big football fan... oh but by the way, as I write the the Hogs are beating #1 LSU which we all have grown to hate whether you are in football or not... LSU fans... well never mind.

Em and I got home around 6:30 and of course her and Sean HAD to go to Walmart for something. I didn't even know Walmart was open on Thanksgiving. Man, what happened to "spend a day with the family?" Em said they are open on Christmas too... some of them are. Really? That's messed up.

Got up this morning to find a note on the kitchen counter that said "Gone Shopping" and the time is listed as 4:04 AM!!!!!! So glad I slept until 6 because I would have been worried silly. They did come by the house around 9 and unloaded some gifts and I was blown away by how much money they saved. They did say that Sears was no where near ready for the crowd. Sean bought his dad a tool chest and they had one and Sean got it.

When they finally came home around 1 I said "you all done for the day". Em smiled and said, "I'm not sure about the w-h-o-l-e day" That's a teenage daughter for ya. Shop til you drop. By the way, she has dropped... out cold sleeping in her room. I predict she will wake up in a bit, ask to go to Sonic for her Dr. Pepper and then turn on the shopping machine again.

Now me on the other hand... I cleaned my closest. It was really bad. Then all the summer stuff went upstairs while all the Christmas stuff came down. I even built a table today. Funny thing was when I went out to the garage after a short break I couldn't find any of the Christmas village. I floored the attic over the spring and didn't move the village boxes back over with the rest of the mess. Up I go again and move boxes down.

I have CI on the mind a lot suddenly. Just seems as though I've begun to get a bit tense about it. I have plenty to do before surgery and just want to make sure it's all done. Just weird that I only go to work Monday and Tuesday next week after being off for the Thanksgiving holiday this week.

All in all it's been a fun day so far.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Thankful



Thankful, blessed, lucky....
The list of words could go on and on. It's a quite morning here with the cold front now having passed through sending the temperatures into their winter zones. The air is wet and the wind is blowing and it now feels like Thanksgiving.

I really do have a lot to be thankful for this year. Serious, I could list a 100 things off the top of my head with hardly a thought and that would just be the beginning. This year I got to hear things in mind blowing clarity in my right ear. Sure there are a lot of things I still miss out on but never would I have ever thought that I would have a fellow recruiter ask me after we interviewed an applicant if I could hear the person because she barely could.
I am still so thankful for the day I got my Unitron hearing aid and got out of the car for a bike ride and stood frozen in awe upon hearing the dry leaves rolling across the parking lot.
The night Terri and I were sitting on the back deck of our house and she asked if I could hear "that"? It took a moment because my brain had to re-remember that sound... the sound of a whippoorwill.
Another was the moment that I was allowed to put my hearing aid back in my ear after canal plasty surgery back in April. After going for 3 weeks in complete silence the world was so loud! I have my fingers crossed that I will get that feeling in a few weeks when they activate my CI. I know I will only hear beeps at first but just to hear a beep in my deaf ear is, I suspect, going to be emotional.

I re-read yesterdays entry part 2 and laughed seeing all the typos. I was in a huge hurry and just keyed and sent so I could go eat pizza with Emmy. Sorry if you read the unedited version.

Well, lots to do this morning so all my peoples.... I wish you a warm and memorable Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Where to start -- Part 2

Where to start -- Part 2
Spent the day in Benton and had a BLAST! Took Dad to his doc appointments and Mom tagged along. He got his flu shot too so my stress level has gone down now.

We called my sister (Sherry) who lives in Benton and told her we finished up and we were coming to kidnap her and go to lunch. Ended up at TaMolleys. It was good.

Ok... funny family story time (Sherry is thinking..."Oh no!")
Sherry broke her leg several weeks ago and now has a boot. We went to lunch in my Explorer and when she got ready to leave after lunch she keeping trying to hop in. With the leg still a tad bit tender she couldn't "hop" in. She was getting a little flustered and finally I felt sorry for her. Said, "Hey Sherry, if you turn around you can just sit on the sit then pull you legs in." We both busted out laughing.

At home Dad was in his chair and Mom brought his pills in and she starts feeding them to him like like Cleopatra and the King. She did it with such grace and I suddenly busted out laughing. After I explained what was so funny Dad was laughing so hard he coughed.

Sherry told me how much her kids HATED the garden and had to go pick vegetables all the time one summer. I remember that summer. I think they were dabbing in the Quaker faith that summer.

She told me about hiking up to Pinnacle Mountain once and it started storming and they couldn't get down fast enough. I reminded her of a time that she and I went hiking. We were lost in the forest for days with no food or shelter. OK, maybe it was a couple of hours, but it felt like days... didn't it Sherry?
Note to Jim: Your mom said you used to mow you Grand mom Gardner's yard for about 5 minutes then your mom had to always finish it. Then rumor has it you got the money for mowing. With compounded interest I think you owe your mom about 6 grand.

I love going down there and visiting and listening to all the funny stories and "theories" they have.

One the way home it was 10 mph all the way down I-430. I saw two wrecks going to the folks this morning and one lady slipped across the median and into the oncoming lane of traffic on the interest. The wreck happened seconds before I topped the hill. Another wreck on an exit ramp just a few miles up the road. On the way back the storm hit as I was on the river bridge. I HATE to be on the bridge when strong gusty winds and hard rain hits. It happened one year coming across a bay in Panama City and I had my foot all the way down to the floor and our car was going about 5 mph then lightening struck a tree just as we got off the bridge. Yes, it warped me for life.

Here's s few photos of the dessert cook off at the hospital

Me on the left and the hospital Chaplin, Del on the right.



Martha was the winner and it was one AWESOME dessert!

Where to start??

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TERRI!!!! Hope you are having fun on the beach!

I ending up taking the whole day off today. The original plan was to work until 10 then drive down to the folks house and take Dad to his doc appt. But during a meeing Evie said, "Geo's off tomorrow". My boss looked at me and he knew that I was working until 10 but as I sat there and thought about it I liked the being off all day idea. So I asked after the meeting if he mind if I took off the whole day. I knew the answer was going to be "Sure, no problem", but I still like to ask.

So the storm came through and lit up the bedroom at 4:30. Try as I may, I couldn't really get back to sleep. 5am I was up and at 'em. Ugh! Still really warm outside when I let Sadie out. TV says if you are heading out today to take a jacket because the temps are going to drive bomb later this afternoon.

I have a million things I want to get done today and over the course of the long weekend. Guess I better sign off and get busy!

ONE WEEK TIL THE CI!!! Just seems too unreal!

Monday, November 19, 2007

The bike was in the picture!

CI countdown... 9 days out!

Well everyone the bike made it to the picture on Sunday! Boy did it feel good to be back out and cranking away. It was sort of on of those "oh look at the pretty leaves sort of ride" but I had a good average to coming back after pulling a Joba the Hut. I stayed on the north side of the river looking for friends I've lost over the past few months. I spotted the AR Bike Club but that was it. I saw Ed's truck over by the Big Bridge but no Ed. The climb to Fort Roots was even fun as I remember. Overall, the bikeway was really quite for a Sunday afternoon.

The weather is about to change... big time! They said the "s" word in the forecast for Friday. Snow. Just a slight chance but it those slight chances that dump on us when we're not ready.

Church media went smooth yesterday. Love it when that happens! We are having a short devo tomorrow (Tuesday) night rather than normal Wednesday classes. But guess what? They want a whole production! Wha??? No rest... no rest at all. There are videos and and all sorts of stuff. I put the presentation together and headed to the building. Lucky for my that is only a mile from the house. One of the videos they want will not work! UGH! I spent an hour and a half working with the codec and everything else. The video just will no play nice. It's not a major piece of the production so I emailed them and requested they not try to include it. The rest turned out nice. Lots of animation and fade in's and outs. Love the stuff!

Every year the hospital gives all the employees a Thanksgiving gift. Yep all 4,000 of us! We got to choose from a turkey, a ham, a cheesecake or new this year... ribs! Yep, I'm going for the ribs. They bring an 18 wheeler and we can get it right off the truck tomorrow or we can pick it up at the Honey Baked store. Good stuff.... Joba Syndrome will continue a little longer I guess! HA!

Terri was off and got the carpet cleaned today. Always go Ewww when we see how bad it was. House smells like oranges tonight.

Life is good! Hey meant to say, if you are traveling this Thanksgiving, have a great time and be careful.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Sunny Sherwood Saturday

I think it's fall here again. Yep, I'm quite sure of it. It's really cool and windy and the yard is covered in leaves. I'll be cranking the lawnmower up and heading out to get them all up after while.

I judged a dessert cook off at the hospital yesterday. The winner was a fancy lemon souffle surrounded by lady fingers. It was light and fluffy and I wanted to eat it all but the slice was huge and I had already sampled 10 other entries. I gave it a 5 (highest). The other favorite to me was a brownie sandwich. It was a thin slice of brownie then had a blob of chocolate cheesecake in the middle the another thin slice of brownie. Around the sides was finely crushed peppermint every now and then. Oh momma slip me! It was good. Check back here because Kelley shot some photos and I'll get a hold of some of them and show you these 2.

We went over to Texas Roadhouse for dinner last night. Talk about VIP treatment! 2 of Em's friends work there and they waited on us hand and foot. I had my usual prime rib and it was like the end of a good book when I finished. I was happy. HA!

Greg and I went through the Sunday service media and just a couple of very minor adjustments and we'll be ready to roll. We talked for a few minutes as we always do. I call them my weekly "Balcony Sessions". He asked if I was getting excited about the CI and I am but I also told him the nervousness is beginning to creep in a little. It's not the surgery I'm worried about. That's a breeze. Surgery, home, relax a couple of days then back to normal routine. It's the activation that has me worried. Remember the book Rebuilt I was talking about? Well the author is opening honest about everything including his dating life which I understand why he includes that (for social standpoint of CI users). But while reading it I also realized that this journey is not going to be easy by any means. I wonder how I will adjust to being deaf in my right ear for almost 7 years now. How long will it take my brain to clue in and the wires to spark that says, "Oh yeah, I remember this!"

I think there may be the word "bike" in the picture this afternoon. If so I'll be riding with my pal Ed who has lost a whopping 140 lbs! He is a speed demon now on a road bike. I'm now the dough boy who judges dessert contest and only rides every now and then on weekends. HA! (OK, it's really not funny!)

Well time to get busy doing Saturday stuff

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Good to have friends!

I sent out the beg and plea today to see if I could get coverage for church media for the months of Dec. Jan, and maybe Feb. I read on one of the CI blogs or postings that the user had trouble in Church services so I decided I would still do a lot of the creative but let someone advance the program. Once I'm cool with the songs and understanding the sound again then I'll jump back into the drivers seat.

Funny story... last week Michael bumped his remote mic on his belt and ______ nothing. We pulled it off in flying colors but I was looking out of the booth like a deer in highlights. Why am I not hearing him... panic!! Just took a deep breath and advanced he program with the crowd singing. It's so funny how much goes on behind the scenes during a church service. On day they got up there and started talking and welcoming everyone and there was no sound and several folks turned and looked up at the booth at me and I just grinned really big. I don't know anything about the sound board and they all know this but where was the sound roadie? Uh, in the restroom! HA!!! That's like putting a fish in charge of dry land. Ain't gonna work.

Life is good and tomorrow is Friday!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

ACH CI

I forgot all about this and ran across it on you tube.
Here's one of our patients going through CI. this was several years ago i think.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEH28KdxjAY

The big drop

Out from my office window towards the hospital
POURING DOWN!

So at 3pm today it was a hot and muggy 76 degrees and at 4pm it was a windy and c-o-l-d 61 degrees just after the storm passed.

The hospital looked like a ghost ship during the storm and I felt for the folks who sprinted across the parking lot without umbrellas. I hate that cold wet feeling.

Got the call from PR today and they want to follow the CI journey and turn it into a story! I told them out would step out of my comfort zone and blog raw data about what I feel and what is going on as I get cyborged.

I have to admit the Rebuilt book is really helpful because too much of it is what I've felt. The loneliness of not going somewhere because there would be too much noise and you just can't hear voices enough to understand. Actually I can hear voices but I don't understand. It's an insane sort of feeling. Serious, my hands sweat sometimes when I go into a meeting just because I wonder if I'll be able to hear.

Another fear is going to happen next week. Terri and Tyler will be going down to FL to see Terri's folks. Emmy and I will be here at home. So what's the fear? At night I can't sleep because I'm afraid something will happen and if Emmy called out to me for something, not that she has in years, I wouldn't have my hearing aid on to hear her. It's a "what if" sort of feeling.

Yes, I'm looking forward to the surgery and the real start of the CI journey and yes, I have really high expectations. One of the things Rebuilt mentioned what that the author listened to Winnie the Poo and read along in the book so he would learn the sounds that go with the words. First thought, "what a cool idea". I bet it's all part of the therapy.

I was surprised when Speech Path called and asked if it was OK that my Speech Therapy appointments were not the same day as my Audio appts. Speech therapy?! My speech is fine. OK, thick country southern accent but fine otherwise! HA! Sorry but you can't take the south out of this boy. I'm interested to see what I'll be doing in speech. I know it will be repeating words and sentences I suppose. Oh man, just thought of something... please Lord, don't let it be those same words I have to say in my hearing test!!!
Say the word baseball
Say the word hot dog
Say the word sidewalk
Say the word 'night y'all!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Cochlear Implant countdown...

Cochlear Implant: 15 days and counting!


It hit me today as I booked an appointment in my datebook for Nov 27th. I would be getting my CI the next day! I'll getting excited now. Yep, two weeks from Wednesday. I slipped in and read the notes on my account to be sure everything was really in place and I saw the insurance authorization number and they even gave me a 2 day ticket to ride inpatient if needed. It won't be. I'm just doing this through the drive through lane! In and out in a few hours, home to sleep off the versed and just hanging out the next day. I wished they made versed in a 6 pack! They give me that stuff then I just dgjaaash sijgths 'ojpjnaidfhb .....


I plan to get a movie or two for the day after. I remember growing up and if I had to stay at home sick there was never anything to watch (pre-cable). Well guess what? Now years later I can be at home and loaded up with a truckload of stations and still hate daytime TV. If I'm ever in a car wreck where I have to stay put, trust me, TV is not going to be a part of my day! Judge this and Judge that with "Have you been injured in a car accident?" commercials in between. Not me!


I've been over to the cochlear implant forums at Advanced Bionics site and there are some really nice folks over there who have gone through what I'm about to. It's been a nice way to ease the nerves.


I kept seeing a reference to a book called Rebuilt by Micheal Chorost. He was 36 and on the road traveling when his hearing aids go out or so he thought and it was his hearing going down by the hour. He ends up with CI's. I read an except from his book on Amazon and thought this is so true to life. I mean the guy hits it on the head! So I asked the buds over in our CI clinic if they had the book and sure enough. I got it this afternoon and plan to start reading it here in a little while.
I love the book cover! One of my coworkers saw the book on my desk this afternoon and said, "Is that going to be you?" You bet cha! Part Computer/Part Man!
Ok, I know the other big question you want to know...
How many miles did I ride this weekend?
Uh, that would be zero.
WHA??!!!
I said that would be zero, turn your aid up a little!
But why?
So you can hear me!
No... but why no ride?
Because I was busy cleaning the yard.
I have a neighbor who cleaned the leaves off their yard Saturday and then again Sunday because yo couldn't tell they did it the first time. This morning as we drove out of the drive I pointed there yard out to Terri and neither of us could believe their yard was covered up again. I mean it's really covered up.
Oh well.....

Saturday, November 10, 2007

North Little Rock fall color and swans

Seems like just the other day
I took this same photo and it was fall.
Another yar has yet come and gone.

After battling a stomach problem all afternoon and into the night yesterday I woke feeling really rested. Maybe that was because I parked it after I got home and didn't do anything but watch the tube and nap then in bed around 10.

I turned the clock away from me so I couldn't see what time it was and I would really get some rest. For some reason I have this goofy mental thing that if it's 4:30 then I'll be up in an hour so why get anymore sleep? But if I don't see the clock I will sleep until daylight. Weird sleep patterns seem to run through my family.

Since I was feeling so good and the sun was just coming over the hills I ran down the road to the lakes and tried to shoot at the Old Mill but it was closed until 8 and I would the early sunlight. Also they had a backhoe parked down there. There goes everyone's fall photos. If you have ever seen the movie "Gone with the Wind" then you've seen the Old Mill. It's several neighborhoods over and a beautiful place to go.

I ended up at a couple of the lakes surrounding the Mill.... enjoy the fall photos from this morning.
The exposure isn't good on this one.
The colors are really dark and rich
but the sun was too high already.
I just have a cheap camera but it's still a lot of fun.

These swans were not happy that I didn't bring them food like many visitors do.

Friday, November 09, 2007

The Friday 5

Sneaking in a blog hit right quick while no one is looking...

Friday five, here we go...

1) Yes, I am riding my bike tomorrow afternoon. I need to work on my climbing.

2) I have to mow up leaves this weekend

3) Got to clean the garage because I know that an attic full of Christmas stuff is about to coming down in a few weeks.

4) For those who know me... I ate fish taco's last night so I won't be eating them this Saturday.

5) Terri returns this afternoon!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Thursday

Another day of Mr. Mom is coming to an end. Terri will be home tomorrow. I spoke with her earlier today and said the meetings were going good.


Here's the opening media for Sunday. Y'all don't forget, it's Vet's Day Sunday.

I'm having a blast doing media for church. Sometimes I get really nervous in the booth during the services since I move the media with the songs. I'm afraid I'm going to miss something but so far there has only been one bad Sunday but no one remembers now but me. It was an emotional service and one of he songs got out of order and I sort of jumped the tracks. Luckily the songs were ones everyone knew so not a big deal.
I have a link off of my website to my niece Melissa's blog. She is in the middle of the time of life when everyone is having kids. She and her crazy husband (that's crazy in a good sort of way) have twins. She has some of the best links off her blog. Most are mommy sort of chick reading stuff but some are filled with heartwarming stories while others are filled with heartbreaking. There's a mom with quads. No, you fool... not a deer camp ATV. She has 4 babies. One of he mom's is starting an adoption process. I won't even tell you what is on her blog today! Remember the movie Caddy Shack and the Baby Ruth? It's something like that!
I cannot believe tomorrow is Friday! Everybody dance now!!!

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

The big boom!

Frost is coming in so I shot these two real quick before work.
It's going to be sad to see the summer flowers leaving for a few months.


Ok, I lied... there is something going on. We have had 2 days of drill at the hospital. What happened? A fake BIG earthquake. I mean end of the world type stuff. My VP was Administrator-on-call this week and every time she's on call something happens. Usually it's something like a snow/ice storm or something crazy but this week she got to save the world. It was funny seeing the update emails coming out. It started off as an earth quake in a small rural town of Arkansas but it ends up complete chaos! I mean the sewage failed, cell phone service goes down, public panic and they start coming to the hospital, traffic stops and EMT's can't get through. Yes, that crazy.

But as much as we laughed about it, it was a good thinking exercise too. Terri and I drove down to Benton after work yesterday to have a little family meeting with my sisters. Nothing big, just planning some stuff. Anyway, we were talking about what would be our plan if something of that scale did happen? I'm lucky that my wife is 3 blocks from my building and our son works about 2 blocks from her. We worried about Emmy being 8 miles away over here. Morbid, I know, but you really do need to plan for the unexpected sometimes.

Terri has a conference over in Vicksburg, MS today and tomorrow and will be home Friday afternoon. I guess the drill really did have an effect on me because it was really lonely driving home solo today. I miss hearing about her day... good or bad.

There is a really cool Wounded Soldier bicycle ride coming through Little Rock tomorrow around 11. I hope to bust out a few moments and get some place so when they ride by I can cheer them on. They will ride from War Memorial stadium down to the bike trail along the river and over the big bridge then along the north side to the USS Razorback sub. That will be really great for those guys!

Walking with The Dino's starts tomorrow at Alltel. They have been here for a week setting up.

I noticed on my comments was an entry from a girl named Jennifer. Folks, I think she got her 2nd cochlear implant surgery yesterday. Cochlear in stereo! I was over on the Advanced Bionics boards trying to calm my pre-surgery nerves. Hello Jennifer and thanks for the comment! i hope your surgery went well!

Oh yeah, when I got home yesterday, I walked to the end of the drive to get the mail and called Terri out to look across the valley with me. Beautiful afternoon but something had happened over the pas couple of days. The oak trees turned b-r-o-w-n. Serious, straight from green to brown.

Quick hit Wednesday

Just a quick hit this morning. You'll laugh or roll our eyes but it's trash day on my street so you know what that means!! It's getting closer to the weekend! HA!

Not really a lot going on here. I got a shot yesterday for my cochlear implant surgery. Hard to believe that I'm exactly 3 weeks out. If I would have kept the first schedule where I would be doing it over at UAMS then it would be tomorrow but I'm really glad I'm having it with my own hospital. When I went for the shot yesterday i had to go to the ENT clinic and it was like a beehive over there. People everywhere! I asked Patti if it was always like that and she said every Tuesday and Friday. Guess who is in clinic those 2 days... yep, the best... Dr. D (Dornhoffer).

I'll write some more tonight but gotta run to work.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Sunday 11.04.07

Sunset at my sister Donna's backyard (aka: Arkansas River)
The time changed and from what I hear, I was not the only person who woke up an hour earlier. My friend Michael from church said he did the same. i woke at 4:30 rather than my usual 5:30 but did go back to sleep until 5:45. Whew, felt like the day was half over! HA!
I'm not liking the earlier sunset but am digging this daylight by 6:15 again! My girls get up so much easier when it's daylight.
Been a nice relaxed day with nice temps and plenty of sunshine ... sigh... my kind of day!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Oh the bike!

Oh yeah! I did it!!! I rode a down and back on the north side. Man, it was like going back to preschool for bikers. I felt awesome just pushing along at 16-17. Lot of families out and it was a great day to get back in the saddle.

Plan to do it again tomorrow. Hoping I can make the 1pm club ride if for nothing else to say hello to some friends I've not seen in a while.

Our media production for church in the morning is looking good! I'm about to meet up with Greg for the run through. I'm looking forward to infusing more video into the service.

Don't forget to set your clocks back... I'll wake up at 4:30 thinking it's 5:30 no doubt!

Friday, November 02, 2007

The Friday 5

Here's a new gig for Friday's on the blog... 5 things.

1) I do feel bad about eating so much and bragging about it. D-u-m-b!!

2) Tomorrow -- the bike and me! Oh my love my love where have you been! First ride in 47 days. (Note to hard core friends... no I am NOT riding in the morning when it's 50 degrees!). You can find me on the river trail about 2:30 or 3.

3) I'm loving our Honda Odyssey! It's so soccer mom or old foogie van but man they ride nice and the space... they were made for road trips!

4) One of the stores here sent us a post card to let us know they were opening at 6am this Saturday morning. So what? Hope they don't expect folks to be waiting in lawn chairs for them to open. What happened to celebrating a little Thanksgiving for a moment?

5) Favorite costume seen this week... on my nephews blog. His daughter dressed as her mom (nephews wife). She went as "Mandy in the Morning".

It's been a good week friends and family! Hope y'all have a greeat weekend and i'll try and write and post a few photos. It's all about the hair!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I kid you not!

I kid you not... the day is a little over half over and I'm so ill and plan to get even ill-er.

Meeting this morning -- "Geo, I brought dounuts!"
(I ate 2 chocolate ones --- but but but I got a flu shot then too. I needed comfort food!)

After meeting -- "Geo, I'm going to Java City... come on!"
(I go to Java City and gets a medium latte)

A bit later -- "Geo there were dounuts left over so I brought them up. They're over there on the counter."
(Thank goodness... no chocolate ones left -- I passed)

10:30a.m. --- Time to go over and judge a chili cookoff for one of my departments.
(I sampled 5 different ones -- 4 little samples and a big one -- ever had BBQ chili --- good stuff!)

!0:32 a.m. -- Ok, maybe a little later -- I find out I also am a judge for the desserts.
(Cheesecake won hands down! It was my daughters boyfriend (or whatever he is this week)stepmoms cake. She works at ACH).

11:00 a.m. Given a Thank You gift for judging. Bag of Orange lifesavers and box of Whoppers. Both are downfalls for me.

Noon: Open the box of Whoppers

Noon -o- two: Shaking the box wondering where they all are... tummy reminds me.

1:33pm -- I need a coke... be right back!

**************Later that day****************************

I know, y'all want me to say I barfed! I didn't...

Ok, so at 1:33 I got up to go get the coke but never made it.

2PM -- "Geo, come on it's October birthday's in the conference room!"
(I'm thinking, they're joking right? So I have my piece of birthday cake)

2:30pm -- I opened my bottom drawer for a form and there looking at me with evil brown eyes are a box of Whoopers that I was given earlier for judging the chili cookoff. I released a primal scream and eat them! Ok, maybe not the primal scream part.

Dinner: Terri made Weight Watcher taco soup. I eat it to ward off the evil hunger spirits but she also made cornbread that was like cake... ohhh cake! I had 3 slices. No shame at all!

8PM a juice size glass of chocolate milk.... ok I have to have chocolate milk at night. I've done this for 500 years now.

Well tomorrow will be a better day... (I'm thinking all the left over Halloween candy!)

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Missing my homeys!

Man, I'm really missing the love of my biker buds these days! Rushed to get home and still didn't make it out there for the ride. I did notice that at 6:15 is was starting to get dark. That's only 15 minutes into the ride. Oh the fun thoughts of me trying to get back to my car and riding along the river trail in the dark with only a three quarter moon as light. I would sing at the top of my lungs to spook the deer out of the way. Surprised they never got ticked about it and mug me and beat the snot out of me to make me shut up! Trust me, hearing impaired folks don't sing the best... sort of like that kid on Little Rascals. Yep, that bad. But then come to think of it, I don't think we (the hearing impaired nation) are as bad as some of the folks on American Idol.

Emily got back from DC last night. We picked her up at the airport and got home around 11. No one wanted to get up this morning. She had a great time and had loaded her photos by the time we got home today. I think I might have to got to DC some day. Cool stuff. I was strange saying her shooting a gun at the FBI training center.

You know how I live for the weekends and certain things signal the weekend is approaching? Yes, I took the trash to the curb tonight. That means tomorrow is Wednesday and that's the halfway point and when the tornado tester sirens go off at noon tomorrow it's all downhill from there baby! At least that's what I like to think!

By the way, a couple of friends of mine have announced they are expecting! I'm happy as a loon for them. They have one little girl. Both of the parents are a hoot to be around and I'll tell you more later. Not sure how public it is just yet.

Happy Halloween folks! Y'all go buy good candy if you haven't already. Don't bu that cheap crap... Oh, I got to see some of Charlie Brown tonight. Haven't seen it in a few years. I as really laughing! Poor Charlie Brown... do you realize he has been getting those same rocks in his trick or treat bag since 1966??!!!!

Geo out....

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Ok, so anyway...

Ok so anyway....

Rain for couple of days then a teaser of sunshine then a cold drizzly day. But in reality it was a beautiful day! Trust me on this one!

Last night I was checking over the heating system in our house and I sneezed from the dust. Silence. Everything became very quite and the only sound was way off in that barrel effect sound. I gasped and then told myself to pull it together. I was as nervous as I could ever be. I became sick at my stomach at the thought that my hearing had just bottomed out. Think positive my man, think positive. It's not what you think, it's not what you think, it's not what you think... Hearing aid out, drops in, throw yourself into your work. I closed my eyes to sleep a few hours later wondering what the world world be like tomorrow.

I got up and went about my routine and kept putting off the hearing aid longer and longer. I had to go to work but first had to hear Emmy's voice before she left for DC today. Flipped the switch and bottom of the barrel sounding.... but it was a little better. I could hear enough to wish her a fun time and to tell the Bush's hello for us.

On the way t work I popped my ears over and over. It really is what you are supposed to do with ear problems (unless it's post surgery). With each pop it allows a tad bit of fluid out. I logged in at the office and tried to play cool. Who am i fooling? I stopped, headed out the back door and straight to my safe zone... Audiology. On of my favorite heros looked at it and smiled.

Geo, what's it been doing outside for the past few days?

Raining.

And what happens to our hearing aid when it gets wet?

It croaks.

That's what happened.

But I didn't get it wet.

Didn't have to. There is so much mositure in the air it's getting in through the door where the battery is.

Are you serious?

(Warm smile) Yes. Come on, let's fix it up.

Flipped the switch and ta-da!!!

I told them the sound of the aid was different than when I workout/ride and it gets wet.

Ok so anyway... LIFE IS FULL OF SOUND AND IS GOOD!

Let's see what else... today is the official end of the 40 Days. Of course it's raining so I can't ride (which I gave up for 40 days) but my tail will be on the river trail for a "Hello legs, remember me?" ride. I have gained way too much weight during this but it was a good thing. If you haven't tried one of those bibical 40 days without something ... try it but be forewarned, it can make you insane but it gives you a clear picture of a lot of things.

Man this house it quite without Emmy the cell phone queen. She did make it to DC and has a beautiful hotel with a great view. They were about to go hang out and see the nation's capitol city. It was funny listening to Terri talk about them at the airport. "Oh yeah, it was fine but Pam had to check in her gun..." At least my daughter's Washington baodyguard "carries" HA!

Well, y'all stay dry out there and I'll right some more soon...

Monday, October 22, 2007

Close to 2 months then the wheels began to turn again

It's been close to 2 months since I've written in bloggness. Folks have really asked me to write again. People really think this stuff is interesting?

Well awww righty then, let's kick off this show!

Let's see, I gave up my bike riding for 40 days for a church issue. Ok ok, giving up the blog was a part of it too. Have you ever done this 40 Day deal. Man, I'm telling ya, it's playing a real game and it will stap you ragged. I will admit, I rode my bike 1 day for a ride I signed up for a long time ago but I only rode half and felt guilty for doing that. It's sitting in the same place I put it that day after the ride. It's right by the door in our garage so it begs me every day. I hope what they say about "it's just like rding a bike, you don't forget." If that's not true then keep checking back and I'll post bloddy crash pics.

I have hair now! Serious! I have hair on my legs which I've not had in a couple of years. I have a lot of hair on my head now. It is inching over my collar back there now. I'm doing it for 2 reasons. One and the real reason is for the cochlear implant I'll be getting the Wednesday after Thanksgiving. I was given the opition to move it back 2 weeks and have it done right here. It's going to be a hoot because I recruit the surgery staff and now they're going to see me in a pediatric backless OR gown. I was told I had to wear Batman underwear like all of our other patients. My favorite nurse said she preferred Superman. I think they are going to mess with me something bad! Oh well, y'all know me... make 'em smile and the world is a happier place. The other reason my hair is growing out is some weird midlife crisis I'm going through.

Oh, I meant to ask... y'alll ever look at photo blogs? They are the bomb! I love looking at weekend warrior photographers work. There are some awesome folks out there. Go over to flick'r http://www.flickr.com/ and type in anything you want in the search. I've only run across one that had nude photos but it warned me before it opened that it would be partly nude, so you have time to exit out of that... yes, I exited out... geesh! I have used a couple of photos I've found for slides during church services. I just send an email for permission to use one time. Most are very excited you use their work. It's a free compared to stock photos. There is also a guy that walks along the river with a camera a lot and I found his work. Type in North Little Rock and you'll find it. Awesome stuff! You can also type in any event and someone has photos posted.

OK... that's a taste of what's to come... thanks for reading friends and family!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Oh what a beau-tee-full morning!

Oh what a beautiful morning it was! Rumor had it we would see a low in the 60's for the first time in a long time and we did! I woke to 67 degrees and I let Sadie out and even left the door craked so she could go in and out. Been a long time since that happened. I even opened a window or two. Ahhhh, fresh morning air and a Saturday of a long weekend. Neighborhood was as quite as it gets. I had a little breakfast and headed out the door for a ride to the river and some play time. I spotted several long lost friends and said howdy as we passed. I was hoping to see the NLR Summerset 5K but they were finished when I rolled through.

I stayed on the NLR side and there was yet another no addition to to the trial. There is now and new section to stop and enjoy the sand bar view where the boats all bank and play volleyball in the middle of the river. Yep, it's cool. I also spotted a few larger house boats easing their way down the river.

I finally headed toward the house and still rolled in 45 minutes before I thought I would. Next week is the MS150. I'm going to ride the Saturday part of the ride and boy I'm looking forward to it!

Lots of folks are going to ride Robb's POP ride tomorrow. I wished I could go out and ride it. I've done it once and it's a blast. Tough but fun. Part of the course is the Saturday MS course. I would be nice to go out and ride that for prep for next Saturday.

Later folks!
Geo.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Life explained

God created the dog and said:"Sit all day by the door of your house and bark at anyone who comes in or walks past. For this, I will give you a life span of twenty years."

The dog said: "That's a long time to be barking. How about only ten years and I'll give you back the other ten?"

So God agreed.

On the second day, God created the monkey and said:"Entertain people, do tricks, and make them laugh. For this, I'll give you a twenty-year life span."

The monkey said: "Monkey tricks for twenty years? That's a pretty long time to perform. How about I give you back ten like the dog did?"

And God agreed.

On the third day, God created the cow and said:"You must go into the field with the farmer all day long and suffer under the sun, have calves and give milk to support the farmer 's family For this, I will give you a life span of sixty Years."

The cow said: "That's kind of a tough life you want me to live for sixty years. How about twenty and I'll give back the other forty?"

And God agreed again.

On the fourth day, God created man and said:"Eat, sleep, play, marry and enjoy your life. For this, I'll give you twenty years."

But man said: "Only twenty years ? Could you possibly give me my twenty, the forty the cow gave back, the ten the monkey gave back, and the ten the dog gave back; that makes eighty, okay?"

"Okay," said God, "You asked for it."

So that is why for our first twenty years we eat, sleep, play and enjoy ourselves.

For the next forty years we slave in the sun to support our family.

For the next ten years we do monkey tricks to entertain the grandchildren.

And for the last ten years we sit on the front porch and bark at everyone.

Life has now been explained to you.